Does your smartphone stress you out?

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A work colleague shared an interesting article last week on the use of smartphones and Text 100 work life balance their impact on stress levels. The article was based on a study by the British Psychological Society that found a link between stress levels and the number of times a person picks up their smartphone to check messages and mail. The result of the study can be read in their site.

Mobile use statistics for 2011 show us how the use of smartphones has increased over the years:

  • 1.08 billion of people in the world have smartphones
  • By 2014, mobile internet should take over desktop internet usage
  • On average Americans spend 2.7 hours per day socializing on their mobiles
  • 91% on internet mobile access is to socialize

Who has not fallen victim to the “phantom vibration” from their phone when it actually didn’t ring? Are we all becoming addicts to our smartphones? I’m afraid the answer is clear – yes, we are.

If  “smartphone addiction” sounds like something you suffer from, here are a few helpful tips for smarter use:

  • Allocate for ‘social time’ in the day. i.e. First 30 minutes of your working day for business platforms and last 30 minutes of your day for the personal socialization.
  • Turn off your device if you are in a meeting, if you are having lunch with someone or if you are enjoying some time with your family. There is nothing more frustrating than someone checking the phone and not listening to you!
  • Turn off your email after a certain time in the evening, i.e. 7 p.m.
  • Try not to connect to work email during holidays. If you are waiting for something important, limit yourself to check just once a day (and not 50 times a day!)
  • Consider how often your followers want to hear from you – they likely will prefer one interesting post on Facebook and one tweet from you, rather than being bombarded all day.
  • Start practicing one ‘free mobile’ hour per day. Go for a walk, play with your child or practice a hobby, but leave your mobile at home. It may feel weird at first, but trust me, you’ll get used to it (and even start to enjoy it)!

Still not convinced? Check out this video for a glimpse in to what you might be missing if you stay glued to your smartphone…

Smartphones are a blessing and a curse – while they’ve allowed us to have more flexible schedules between our work and personal lives, they make it easy to be disconnected from the world around you. Make sure you find the right balance!